You may have guessed from the rest of ShinyPlastic.com that I love gadgets: I normally have one or two gadgets in my pockets but when I travel on business or go on vacation I need a better solution for transporting my camera, iPod mini, pocket pc, cases, headphones, chargers, memory cards, etc etc etc.
Roadwired were kind enough to send me their Pod “digital lifestyle” bag and I tested it on a 10 day trip to Mexico: A trip that ended with Category 5 Hurricane Ivan coming to visit!
How did the Pod cope with Ivan?, keep reading to find out……
Buy the Pod from ebags for $49.99
At first glance the 7″ x 6.5″ x 5″ 13oz Pod looked a lot like a typical camera/accessory bag, but once I took a closer look I realized there was a lot more to the Pod.
The Pod has a center compartment (with removable “hammock” to hold devices securely) and 3 main outside zippered pockets. A large lid covers the center compartment and part of the sides and is secured with a sturdy plastic clip.
There are a number of way to carry your Pod: the rear has straps to go through a belt, there is a carrying handle on top, and there is a shoulder strap. Alternatively for traveling you can just put the pod inside your main carry-on bag to keep all your gadgets safely in one place.
Once you open the top lip of the Pod you can see into the main compartment. The main compartment is 6.5″ high 3.5″ wide and 4″ deep.
The lid of the Pod has space for a business card as well as a secret compartment.
The 3 zippered pockets open up to 45 degree to allow good access to the contents without letting gadgets fall out.
Each pocket contains a number of elastic compartments and smaller pockets for batteries, storage cards, etc.
Overall there are more than 20 pockets and compartments.
Loading the Pod:
I was amazed at the amount of gadgets and related stuff I could fit into the Pod.
Here’s what I put in mine for the trip:
- Canon Powershot S400 Digital Elph Camera
- Dell Axim X30 Pocket PC with Extended Battery
- Apple iPod Mini MP3 Player
- Sanyo PM-8200 Cell Phone
- Battery Charger for Camera
- 2 Spare Camera Batteries
- 2 Spare Compact Flash Cards
- 2 Regular Spare Batteries for Pocket PC
- AC Adapter and Cord for Pocket PC
- Spare SD Card for Pocket PC
- Piel Frama Leather Case for Pocket PC
- Vaja Leather Case for Pocket PC (with Belt Clip)
- Belt Clip for iPod Mini
- Regular Earphones for iPod Mini
- Shure E3c Earphones in Carrying Case
- A Dozen Assorted Sleeves for the E3c Earphones
My plan was to take the Pod on a 10 day vacation to Playa Del Carmen and Cancun Mexico to see how it coped with the stresses of day to day use.
The Pod made things really convenient on the flight: I was able to access all my gadgets and accessories very easily and the bag seemed to be well padded so I had no concerns about damage.
Once we got to Playa Del Carmen and Cancun the Pod made it easy for us to keep our gadgets in one place, put them in the room safe when not in use, and keep them out of direct sunlight at the pool and on the beach.
The Pod did a great job of protecting the gadgets from sand and the occasional rain shower.
The weather soon took a turn for the worse…. Hurricane Ivan just kept on coming further and further west towards Cancun, a hurricane warning was issued, everything closed down, and plans were made to evacuate the hotel guests to a shelter.
There was almost no food available, alcohol sales were banned by the government, the beach was cleared of anything that could get blown away, all the coconuts were knocked off the trees, all the pool chairs were dropped into the pool, and they even cancelled my reservation for a massage. All I had left to do was sit in my room, read, listen to music, check the weather channel ad infinitum, and subject my gadgets to stresses not intended by the designers!.
Ivan eventually turned northwest and missed Cancun but we did get a little bit of category 1 Hurricane strength winds, a lot of tropical storm winds, some waves that looked to be about 30 feet high, and enough of a storm surge to cover the 100 foot wide beach.
At the height of the storm I took the Pod out onto our 11th floor hotel balcony and the Pod performed wonderfully: I held onto the lid strap and it felt secure in my hand, no rain got inside, nothing fell out and all the zips and connectors stayed tightly closed.
The Pod is definitely something I would buy and have with me on every business trip and vacation, it is also great for keeping all my accessories, cords, chargers, batteries, and memory cards tidy and in one place at home.
Well-made and strong
Pockets and little elastic straps everywhere
Water-repellent not waterproof (not a major problem unless you plan on going swimming with the Pod)
Overall Rating: 9/10
Buy the Pod from ebags for $49.99